Jerry Maguire (1996)
Credits :: Screen Captures :: Video Clips

Role: Dennis Wilburn

Plot Summary: Jerry Maguire is just another ruthless sports agent until he has an epiphany: it's the client that's important, not the agency. Fewer clients, more attention, he suggests. This goes over like a lead balloon with the bigwigs, and he's fired by the guy who used to kiss up to him all the time, Bob Sugar. Mr. Sugar reveals his inner rat when he lies to all of Jerry's clients and gets them for himself, leaving Jerry high and dry except for two clients: Rod Tidwell and Frank Cushman. Poor Jerry is happy just to have this, especially since Cush is a big shot, but Sugar manages to underhandedly steal him, too. It's Rod and Rod alone. Too bad Rod has a huge head and a huge chip on his shoulder - and a fondness for the phrase "SHOW ME THE MONEY!!!"

Jerry breaks up with his shallow, bossy fiancee at this time, too, and turns his attention to Dorothy Boyd, the one woman who went with him when he left the agency because she believed in him (and has a bit of a crush on him). Jerry bonds with Dorothy and her absolutely adorable son Ray. Soon romance blooms, and before long they're married.

Meanwhile, business still isn't going so well. Jerry is having a hard time renegotiating Rod's contract with Arizona thanks to a disagreeable Dennis (played by Glenn; see below for more details). All Jerry can get from him is $1.7 million for three years [Editorial comment: sounds good to me but hey, no one's showing me any money.] The problem is that Rod just hasn't proven himself. Finally, after a bad day at Arizona (where we get to see Dennis Wilburn again), Jerry tells Rod to start "playing with his heart." In fine movie style, it works like a charm. Rod starts scoring.

Unfortunately, Jerry's marriage is hitting some bumps. He is unable to be emotionally intimate; he's unable to express love. This causes Dorothy to suggest a break... maybe for good.

Then it's time for the big game. Rod is proving invaluable - nine catches - but those Dallas Cowboys keep hammering him, and after a stellar catch where he practically lands on his head, he gets knocked out. Watching at home, his family waits anxiously to hear if he's OK (side note: one member of this family is played by Aries Spears aka Ziggy on South of Sunset). After a tense moment, he's back on his feet and hamming it up, but Jerry realizes right then that nothing is more important than his friend. Afterwards, Dennis gives Jerry the big thumbs-up. He's impressed.

After witnessing the moment Rod has with his wife after the game, Jerry has another epiphany: he has nothing if he can't share it with the woman he loves. He runs back to her. "You complete me," he says [Editorial comment: sigh. Great line.] Her response: the classic "You had me at hello."

And on the business side - the Cardinals give Rod a $11 million dollar contract! The End!

Role Description: Dennis Wilburn is the owner of the Arizona Cardinals, and he and Jerry have known each other for a while. We first see Dennis when Jerry is trying to get Rod a good contract with Arizona. He tries to sell Rod to Dennis, but Dennis is waffling - Rod's attitude is too big and his bod is too small. He gives Jerry a taste of what's to come by standing him up at a bar when they were supposed to meet to discuss the contract. The next day, Jerry gets on the phone with Dennis and begs him, based on their history - "I introduced you to your wife!" - to give Rod a good contract. And what does Dennis say? Essentially, "Screw you." He snaps that Jerry never thought about their friendship when he was demanding high fees for his clients, and hangs up on him. Eventually, he offers him a low contract which Rod turns down, saying he'll be a free agent after he finishes out his time with the Cardinals. Later, we see Dennis drop in once when Rod isn't doing so well and then we see him again after Rod's stellar moment against the Cowboys. When Dennis gives that thumbs up to Jerry, we know Rod is set and all will be well.


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